October 22, 2013 • Cee • Lists

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where we list our top tens! This week’s topic is “top ten character names I love in YA.” THIS IS THE PERFECT TOP TEN FOR ME. If you don’t know, I’m a big name person. In my senior thesis, every name I used was important since naming and the meaning behind names drives the characters. (Don’t be surprised if I devote a whole discussion post about names.) I’m just fascinated with why parents name their kids certain names. I limited myself to YA because I didn’t want to overwhelm myself. 

EZRA – Origin:  Hebrew | Meaning: “helper”

I have no idea why the sound of Ezra gets me giddy like a schoolgirl who’s crush just talked to her. I just love it so much. Ez-ra. Ezzz-raaa. It’s only four letters and it manages to make me swoon. (I would hate to meet an Ezra in real life because I don’t want him to be an asshole or a douche.) I love anything that’s a literary reference so when I read that Ezra’s last name is Faulkner, I nearly keeled over. (I’m not a big fan of William Faulkner’s work, but hey, he’s a classic.)

BASIL – Origin: Greek | Meaning: “king, royal”

I loooovvveee the name Basil. I find it fun to say because there’s two ways of saying it – 1. bay-sil (the spice) or 2. baz-il. Can you guess which pronunciation is my favorite? ;D I like it because it sounds like a stuffy English person who comes from a family of aristocrats, whose history can be dated back to the 14th century, who says things like “lovely” and “darling,” and who looks incredibly yet comical (whatever that means). Fun fact: I am listed as Basil in my sister’s partner’s phone. :D

ADRIAN – Origin: Latin | Meaning: “From Hadria”

I find the name ‘Adrian’ to not be memorable (and it makes me think of Rocky), but when it’s coupled with a fucking awesome last name like Ivashkov? Perfection. Ivashkov demands your presence.

CELAENA – Origin: Unknown | Meaning: Unknown

I love this name because it’s sooo unique. I’ve never seen this name spelled this way, which is to be expected since the Throne of Glass world isn’t set in the contemporary world. Lots of points for originality!

HALE – Origin: Old English  | Meaning: from a place meaning “nook, retreat”

I want to know his name! It’s probably a really long and a “family name,” which Hale probably hates (because why else would he abbreviate it?). Though, I’m content with Hale because that is a cool last name.

VIOLET – Origin: Latin | Meaning: “purple”
KLAUS – Origin: German| Meaning: another name for Nicholas, “people of victory”
SUNNY – Origin: English | Meaning: “sunshine, cheerful”
BAUDELAIRE – Origin: Medieval Latin | Meaning: “short sword”

Okay, so, all the names within A Series of Unfortunate Events are awesome. Every time names that are used in the books, I want to shriek in joy because I get overwhelmed by nostalgia. Like I said earlier, I love that these names are tongue-to-cheek jokes or literary figure references. Daniel Handler, ahem, I mean Lemony Snicket, plays with language (and names) in a way that is absolutely brilliant.

PEREGRINE – Origin:  Latin | Meaning: “traveller, wanderer”

My thoughts/feelings on Peregrine is similar to my thoughts/feelings on the name Basil. I love the way it rolls off my tongue. And I’m imagining a Peregrine and a Basil hanging out, sitting in the den room and sipping on cognac while discussing politics. Very up and up. ALSO, there’s the peregrine falcon, which is fucking badass.

INGRID – Origin: Scandinavian and Old Norse | Meaning: “Ing’s beauty”

Ingrid is such a perfect name for creepy stories. Sometimes, when I read gothic-y/creepy stories, I get disappointed when I don’t feel like the name fits with the atmosphere with the book. To me, Ingrid stands out. It strikes me in the goddamn face. Who wants a blah character name in a creepy story? Not me.

ELODIE – Origin: French and Greek | Meaning: “marsh flower”

I ADORE the name Elodie. It’s light and cute. I don’t know why, but when I see that name, I get incredibly hopeful like it’ll lift my spirit up (which it does). It makes me want to run through a meadow. :D

ARCHER – Origin: Latin | Meaning: “Bowman”

Oh Archer. A large part of my love for the Hex Hall series is because of his name. Archer. Fucking. Cross. When I read the first book, I wasn’t into the YA book scene, but as soon as I read his name…I couldn’t stay away. Like Peregrine, it’s fucking badass. (See, he makes me curse.) I imagine that he does badass magic as he jumps cliffs in a Jeep, constantly winking at people when he catches their entranced stares.


Do you like any of the names on my list? Link me up to your favorite character names!


8 Responses to “TOP TEN TUESDAY | Character Names I Love in YA”

  1. I really like Celaena too! Especially because I love her character :D I used to be friends with someone called Ezral (in primary school). l

  2. Andy @ OABR says:

    This week was hard for all of us over at the blog, so many amazing names to choose from! Looks like you had no trouble at all. ;) Great picks!

    Our List
    Andy @ Owl Always Be Reading

  3. Oooh, Celaena Sardothien is a fantastic name! I forgot all about her for this week’s list. I like Ezra too, I always think of Ezra Pound when I hear it.

  4. Ahh I forgot about Ezra Faulkner, thought that was such an amazing name! And I absolutely love all the names of the Baudelaire children! Great list. My STS.

  5. Oh my gosh, I absolutely love what you did here, Cee! I mostly based my character names on how lovely they sounded, but you took one step further and searched up their meanings as well — and created graphics for them. <3 Another thing is that I can't believe I missed out this much. Ezra is a wonderful name, and so is Elodie and Perry. I think that Roar is a pretty cute name as well!

    I kind of want to name any future kids of mine after characters in books. :)

    • Cee says:

      Thank you, Meg! I’m really proud of it!

      I’m a huge name meaning nerd! If you read my senior thesis, I had footnotes that tells people what the names mean. Loll. I’m completely fascinated whether the name reflects on the person you will be or are.

      ME TOO. My kids will have awesome/badass names.

  6. Joanna Velez says:

    I totally agree about Adrian! It’s alright name, but it’s the last name that really seals the deal. Adrian Ivashkov *swoon* I love it!
    Sadly, the only other ones I know and have read about are the Baudelaires and Peregrine. All of which I totally love. I practically grew up with the Series of Unfortunate Events. It was great seeing them in this list! And I recently read Under the Never Sky. I was a little shocked by Peregrine’s name, but I grew to like it. Now that I see what it means, I like it even more. It’s so appropriate. And totally badass
    Check my blog out, please!
    I don’t have a top ten, but I’m hoping to get in on next week’s (:

  7. Kelly L. says:

    Ohh, W.W. Hale sounds super sexy. -wiggles eyebrows- Hale is sexy by himself of course.
    And ahh, I love the name Elodie, which is also in Hex Hall.
    Stay away from MY Archer too! ;D

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